Celtic Elite Player Program a huge success at HBF Arena

The Elite Player Program hosted by Celtic Football Club in Australia has taken place across three days, Monday 23rd, Tuesday 24th and Thursday 26th of April 2018, at HBF Arena in Joondalup.

Joondalup United were the host club for this event as an International Partner of the Scottish Premiership Champions.

The program was staffed with coaches from the Celtic FC Youth Academy, who are some of the finest in Europe, with all players getting to experience life as an Academy player.

The three days consisted of coaching sessions, classroom activity and game time in an environment designed to challenge every player.

“The sessions really worked the players giving them valuable insight into academy life with lunch and dinner provided so they could all recover, whilst working on individual analysis, mindset, Celtic game model, nutrition and coach to player one-to-one feedback and evaluation,” said Darren Brogan, JUFC’s NPL Junior Technical Director.

“All the players that attended had been selected to participate as they were chosen by their coach or recommended and scouted to be involved in this amazing event.”

The Elite Player Program has proved to be a massive success with players gaining valuable training and knowledge from the top Academy Coaches at Celtic – Willie McNab, John McStay, Graham Diamond and Raymond Hewitt.

One of the players was chosen to train with Celtic at their Academy as part of an all-expenses paid trip back to Scotland.

JUFC and Glasgow Celtic team up for Elite Player Program in April

As part of Joondalup United’s international partnership with Glasgow Celtic, an Elite Player Program will be hosted at HBF Arena in Joondalup next month.

The unique event takes place across three days – Monday, April 23, Tuesday, April 24, and Thursday, April 26 – and will be staffed with coaches from the Celtic Academy who are some of the best in Europe.

The three days will consist of coaching sessions, classroom activity and game time in an environment designed to challenge every player.

A number of JUFC’s National Premier League (NPL) players aged between 11 and 16 will be selected to participate in the program.

“We enjoy a strong partnership with Celtic FC and it’s always fantastic when Celtic coaches visit Australia,” says Darren Brogan, JUFC’s NPL Juniors Technical Director.

“The Elite Player Program provides an opportunity for young players to be challenged over three days working with Celtic FC staff, and the event provides a unique opportunity for players to be selected and travel to Glasgow to experience an unforgettable week at a top European club.”

JUFC has been an international partner of Celtic FC since 2016.

Celtic FC coach adds expertise to JUFC’s NPL Junior trials

Joondalup United’s National Premier League (NPL) Juniors trials continued for the 11s and 12s at Wanneroo City Soccer Club and were boosted by a visit from Glasgow Celtic’s Celtic International Academy Manager and 13s Academy Coach Chris Hendry.

Currently in Perth scouting a venue for a potential elite player program in January, Chris carved out some time from his busy schedule to put on a small classroom session for the NPL coaching staff followed by a training session for the 11s and 12s.

“Having a partnership which such a massive club like Celtic affords us the opportunities to tap into the wealth of knowledge they possess and gives us a model to try and replicate at Joondalup United, which can only pay dividends for coaches and players alike,” said JUFC Club President Stephen Martin.

If the elite player program in Perth does get off the ground it will be another massive coup for the club and will hopefully see one of the JUFC youngsters heading off to Glasgow to spend some time with Celtic.

“The Development Trials for Joondalup United have reached new heights in the football community in Perth for the 2018 season,” said Darren Brogan, who is the club’s NPL juniors Coaching Co-ordinator, NPL 12s Head Coach and the official liaison with Celtic.

“We are always wanting to try and do things a bit different to what every other NPL club does trial wise; we like to use the small sided games format with lots of touches for the kids, with skills, juggling and different themes going on throughout the trial to make the kids comfortable on the day and maximising the players chance of success.

“Whilst some clubs have set the bar, JUFC have raised it by utilising their partnership with Celtic Football Club and having Chris Hendry, the Celtic International Academy Manager and 13s Academy Coach, on hand to assist with our NPL 11s and 12s was a massive bonus. The trial session, which lasted two and a half hours, gave every child the chance to train in a unique Academy style environment.

“The event was an amazing spectacle with parents and players commenting that the trials were the best they have ever attended with the 40 kids not wanting it to finish. We had the best talent in Perth on show in these age groups which elevates the club to a whole new level in development terms.

“Celtic also put on a coaching seminar before the event which allowed all our coaching staff a unique insight into one of the best academies in the world totalling the most contact days for kids in Europe providing nine sessions per week and games, reaching the 10,000 hours required to reach top level football.”

A big thank you also goes out to NPL First Team Coach Nick Jennings, 20s Coach Stephen McDowall, 13s Coach Greg Hart, 11s Coach Paddy Rooney and first team vice-captain Josh Whitmore for helping with the training session.